NEW DELHI: Online booking platform Cleartrip has laid off up to 100 employees across functions due to declining hotel and flight bookings in India and a lukewarm response to its listing of ‘experiences’ across the world, multiple people familiar with the developments told ET.
“They have laid off about 80-100 people across their offices in Gurgaon, Mumbai and Bengaluru in functions like business contracting and business development,” a person familiar with the development said.
The company is now looking to move its core functions to West Asia, the sources said.
“Cleartrip is focusing more in the Middle East, and India seems to be falling off its radar” another person close to the company’s affairs told ET.
Cleartrip’s India business has been declining over the last few years, with its market share falling in both flight and hotel booking space due to increasing competition as well as the merger between bigger rival MakeMyTrip and Ibibo.
Cleartrip had also invested significantly in its ‘Experiences’ feature, which was aimed at booking attractions and activities in cities, the second person said. “But that has also not taken off. So they are cutting costs here and are looking at ramping down.”
Responding to ET’s emailed queries, Cleartrip did not confirm or deny any layoff, but said its India headcount over the last six months has increased in excess of 25% and that it is committed to driving growth in the Indian market. “We continue investing in technology and products which is core to the value that the Indian customers see,” the company said in a statement.
Cleartrip reported revenues of Rs 320 crore for 2017-18, up 17% from the previous year but its net loss at Rs 62 crore was about the same as 2016-17.
The company’s total expenses for 2017-18 were reported as Rs 381 crore, up from Rs 336 crore in 2016-17, as per documents accessed from the Registrar of Companies (RoC) by business research platform Tofler.